Sunday, October 27, 2013

Season 10 Underwhelms This X-Phile...So Far

As a huge X-Files fan I was elated at the announcement of a tenth season being created for comics. IDW has a decent track record with licensed properties and I had a lot of confidence in what they would produce based, primarily, on the X-Files/30 Days of Night cross-over book they published a couple of years ago. Hearing that Chris Carter was going to be involved, on any level, was more well than I could have imagined for an X-Files book. To have an 'official' continuation of the series that was being shepherded by its creator was the best thing that anybody who loved the show could hope for.

So, why am I not loving this series five issues in?

The story takes place post-I Want to Believe and does a decent job reintroducing the characters to the reader and setting the stage for the next chapter in the life of Mulder and Scully. The story quickly stops making much sense, however, when Joe Harris, the series' writer, tries to explain the motivations of the story's antagonists and clumsily brings back some characters from the show's past. Despite having five issues to flesh things out and ease the reader into this new scenario, things jump around endlessly from location to location and character to character, and I never quite glommed on to what the heck was going on other than the fact that Mulder and Scully were trying to stop The Acolytes from finding something while simultaneously trying to figure out what the big picture was.

Even at their worst and most convoluted, a mythology episode worked as a story that you were watching; self-contained with a beginning, middle, and end. Where it tended to get confusing was where it fit in the big picture, how it tied in to the web of conspiracies and lies that had been established on the show and what it possibly meant for the future. This story, "The Believers", has all of those elements except I'm not feeling it working as a self-contained thing. Sitting down and reading all five issues this afternoon I didn't feel the flow, and I'm still muddled on what the purpose of the whole caper was.

I am looking forward to the next few issues which, I'm told, will be creature-of-the-week stories. Maybe just having a simple case to solve and creature or weird happening to figure out will get my X-Files juices flowing. I'm also not giving up hope that later stories will shed more light on the events of "The Believers" but, for now, I'm not shouting from the rooftops about how much I'm loving this new iteration.

Also, for the record, I'm enjoying the poop out of Michael Walsh's artwork on the series whatever I may be saying about my level of enjoyment. He's doing some really good work on this book and I'm excited to see where he goes from here as he's only going to get better as time goes on and he becomes more and more familiar with this world and these characters.

So, on that note, carry on and the truth is out there!

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